Black creators have played an important role in shaping the culture on YouTube. From fashion and comedy to politics, learning and wellness, Black creators have propelled the platform forward.
We speak with two Black Canadian content creators who were selected for the 2022 YouTube Black Voices Fund on this podcast episode. Launched in 2020, the multi-year commitment fund was created to directly support Black creators and artists by giving them access to resources so that they can thrive on the YouTube platform.
These resources include a dedicated YouTube partner manager, seed funding to support the creator's channel development, a development incubator, as well as bespoke training, workshops and networking opportunities throughout the year.
This year's roster of 40 creators comprises 5 Canadian creators who, throughout the year, will benefit from valuable mentorship, dedicated support and guidance from YouTube. They are participating in an intensive development program that will cover production, community engagement and wellbeing.
For today's conversation, we will be speaking with Reni Odetoyinbo, who offers her followers actionable advice on financial literacy, and Nora Gweji, or simply Nora G, who's a DIY (Do It Yourself) aficionado. [P.S.: Our host kept referring to DIY as DYI in the podcast episode but we're sure Nora will forgive him :-)].
The other three creators from YouTube Black Voices Fund's class of 2022 are: Mane Yousuf, who uses humour to entertain; Chris De La Rosa, who shares recipes and favourite dishes on his CaribbeanPot channel; and Tosin Ayeronwi, who uses her BGT (Baby Girl Tos) channel to offer fitness content, self-growth vlogs and beauty tips.
Aysha Harun, a Black, Muslim, beauty and lifestyle creator from Canada was part of the 2021 class. She says, “The grant has allowed me to reinvest in my channel by hiring an editor, and bringing on an assistant to my team. The incubators have given me early access to features that keep me ahead of the game in terms of optimization. And I’ve had complete autonomy with the grant, which makes my life a lot less stressful.”
Visit the YouTube channels of Canada's five 2022 YouTube Black Voices Fund participants:
- Mane Yousuf: (852K subs, 83M views) Mane Yousuf is entertaining the masses with laughter and good vibes. By mixing spontaneous interactions with viral songs, Mane has created several shows that showcase his passion and highlight his personality. With access to YouTube, he’s now broadcasting from Calgary to the globe and sharing his humour with the world.
- CaribbeanPot: (795K subs, 90M views) Chris De La Rosa’s love of Caribbean cooking has taken him from a small village in Trinidad and Tobago to millions of kitchens around the world. His website is CaribbeanPot.com. launched in 2009 as a place for the self-taught chef to document family recipes for his daughters and share his favourite dishes. Now, he has a strong community on YouTube cooking to master his recipes.
- BGT: (21K subs, 622K views) As Tosin navigates adulthood, her career, and finding her passion, she’s taking her subscribers along for the ride. She launched her channel in 2019, and makes sketches with friends along with fitness content, self-growth vlogs and beauty tips.
- xoReni: (10.9K subs, 810K views) After buying her first house at the age of 23, Reni saw an opportunity to help more people understand “adulting”. She launched her YouTube channel to become a resource for viewers, and support with career development, financial literacy, and lifestyle content. Her goal? Make complex topics simple.
- Nora G’s Nook: (51K subs, 2M views) Nora G. is a Waterloo-based creator that describes herself as versatile and multifaceted. With an array of passions, she knew she needed a creative outlet to express herself. So Nora G’s Nook was born, where Nora shares everything from interior design to DIYs, fun recipes and fitness tips, and what she calls RTTJMS (Random Things That Just Make Sense!). With every video, she aims to educate, entertain and enlighten.